Many bright ideas on how to improve recycling of plastics in electronics


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An overarching problem with the recycling of electronics is legacy chemicals. The content of some new products, in combination with imported and old products containing legacy chemicals, makes it difficult to create material streams that do not contain problematic substances.

The chemicals added to protect us are among the culprits

Brominated flame retardants are one type of substance that is often found in electronics, making it difficult to give recycled plastics new life.

In addition, many brands that produce electronics have high standards for which chemical substances they accept, preventing them from using – or at least makes it difficult to use – recycled plastics in new products.

In mid-January, we at ChemSec arranged our third workshop on recycled material and chemicals. This time, the topic was plastics in electronics. Several well-known brands and recycling companies participated in a vivid afternoon conversation about challenges, solutions and a way forward.

Here are five ideas that were highlighted during the workshop, on how to make recycling of plastics in electronics work better:

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